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What are Sanctions Lists?

Sanctions are used against individuals, organisations, businesses and entities that are prohibited - ‘sanctioned’ - from certain activities or industries. Any individual or entity that is subject to sanctions will be listed, as will any relatives and close associates (RSA). There are thousands of sanctions lists, most governments will issue sanctions lists, while financial organisations, crime organisations  - well known sanctions lists include the United States’ Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons (SDN) List, and the consolidated lists used by the United Kingdom, the European Union, and the United Nations. Screening customers and potential customers against sanctions list is a vital part of the AML process, but can be difficult to do manually; not only because there are so many lists to check, but also because of the number of false positives that will occur. The easiest, quickest and most accurate way to screen for sanctions against sanctions lists is to use an electronic screening solution. The Smart Search system uses the Dow Jones WatchList for its sanctions screening, which is compiled from more than 1,100 sanctions lists from across the globe. It is updated every day which means it is always 100% accurate and up to date. All AML checks on the SmartSearch system will automatically be screened for sanctions and PEPs and ongoing morning will alert users of any changes. When SmartSearch matches a name on a sanction check, it will automatically perform Enhanced Due Diligence to confirm if it is a true match or a false positive and only inform the client firm if a true match has been found. This saves client firms a huge amount of time and money and gives them the peace of mind that they are always compliant.

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